Gaming disorder is now classified as a mental health condition

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Take a peek at ICD-11's entry on "gambling disorder" and you'll find nearly identical language; In other words, video game addiction has become so notable that it's worth including in a global medical reference document, as the World Health Organization stated in its introduction to ICD-11. The agency and other experts were quick to note that cases of the condition are still very rare, with no more than up to 3 percent of all gamers believed to be affected.

Dr. Joan Harvey, a spokeswoman for the British Psychological Society, warned that the new designation might cause unnecessary concern among parents.

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The games industry raked in US$108 billion (S$146 billion) worldwide in 2017, more than double movie box-office receipts, according to Superdata, which tracks the games and interactive media sector.

Dr. Levounis said he suspects the American Psychiatric Assocation will elevate gaming disorder to full-recognition status in the next edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.

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Simply playing a lot of video games does not automatically mean that someone has a problem. "The gaming prompts a neurological response that influences feelings of pleasure and reward, and the result, in the extreme, is manifested as addictive behavior". Housing almost 55,000 medical issues, the ICD-11 is used for clinical care, research, and is rarely given major revisions, so it is a legitimately big deal that gaming addiction has been added to its pages.

Back when ICD-11's draft version was released in December, the trade group Entertainment Software Association criticized the inclusion of 'gaming disorder, ' stating that it "recklessly trivializes real mental health issues".

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Separately, the WHO listed "hazardous gaming", which is when a pattern of gaming "appreciably increases the risk of harmful physical or mental health consequences to this individual or others around this individual". "If (video games) are interfering with the expected functions of the person - whether it is studies, whether it's socialization, whether it's work - then you need to be cautious and perhaps seek help".

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